Fireplace regulations in Australia
Those who wish to have an open flame fireplace in their home or business should not only consider the benefits and design of the appliance but also the fireplace regulations in your state and territory.
Australia has strict rules for the use of a wood heater to keep your family, as well as your entire neighbourhood, safe.
These regulations can have vary between different states. There will be different requirements in NSW, VIC, SA, QLD, WA and TAS as well in NT and ACT.
So, before you start building a fireplace, you should learn about these regulations so that your fireplace meets the requirements. It’s much easier to address issues BEFORE you build rather than after!
First, when planning to install a fireplace, you must consider the regulations regarding the size of the fireplace as well as where it can be placed within your residence or business establishment.
You should check if it complies with Australian Standard AS/NZS 2918:2018.
Also, like any other appliance, fireplaces and wood heaters should be installed following the manufacturer’s guidelines. Of course, if it’s an open fireplace you’re building then best to speak with your builder or local council for more advice.
Good practice in the installation of the fireplace or wood heater goes well along with a building well insulated to avoid heat loss.
Keep in mind that, if a flue damper is to be used to reduce the draw through the stove and reduce the heat output, it may need to follow some specific regulations as well.
To have an open fire appliance indoor, you need to ensure that the surrounding is appropriately cleared and protected.
This includes a hearth, made of non-combustible material such as our clay pavers, bricks, stones or similar material. Remember, any combustible flooring or framing members must be kept at a distance from the fire.
Note: the size of the hearth will be proportional to the size of your wood heater or fireplace, so keep that in mind when doing your planning. The bigger the fireplace, the bigger the hearth.
Flues and Chimney
Fireplaces in Australia require flue with a specific height above ground and roof level and to be per the size of your furnace to ensure the smoke flows out.
The flue cannot be installed near doors and windows to ensure the exhaust gases do not return into the room.
Flues and Chimneys should be installed in an upright position and sealed to prevent any smoke from escaping into the room.
Your chimney or flue needs to be higher and at a distance from surrounding buildings.
It must not be blocked by trees or any construction.
Fireplace Use and Maintenance
Fireplace use and maintenance must follow Australian Standards as well.
It is essential to keep your chimney clean to avoid fumes entering your room, you should also keep your fireplace in good order to optimise its functionality and performance.
In case of broken or chipped firebricks, Littlehampton Brick makes fire bricks! We stock our firebricks of which measure 230mm x 115mm on the surface with 3 different thicknesses: 35mm, 50mm and 76mm.
For more details and updates, check the National Construction Code (NCC) and with your local council.
Download free a sample of AS NZS 2918 2018 Domestic solid fuel burning appliances – Installation